Meet the hijab-wearing female police officer whose striking picture showing her with a rose on her chest and holding a semi-automatic rifle went viral
- Pictures of an armed female police officer wearing a hijab have gone viral
- She was guarding a cemetery where funerals for shooting victims were held
- Constable Michelle Evans, 24, joined the Whanganui police three years ago
Toting a semi-automatic rifle, police officer Michelle Evans looked foreboding as she stood outside a cemetery in Christchurch yesterday.
But her decision to wear a hijab and pin a red rose to her bulletproof vest as an act of symbolic solidarity touched people around the world.
The photograph, taken by Associated Press photographer Vincent Yu, went viral on Friday with many people commenting that Ms Evans perfectly reflected the feeling many New Zealanders had towards Muslims.
Constable Evans, is just 24, and joined the police force in 2016 as a new recruit.
In an interview she gave to The Whanganui Chronicle, Ms Evans said she wanted to become a police officer to serve the Whanganui community, where she was brought up.
‘I want my career to be here. I love Whanganui. It’s a beautiful, small town and this is where I want to live,’ she said.
Constable Michelle Evans, 24, donned a black Calvin Klein head scarf while she stood guard at Christchurch Memorial Park Cemetery on Thursday
Constable Evans began after spending her gap year studying business and accounting.
When she began working at Whanganui Police she wanted to focus on youth engagement and frontline work.
She works out everyday, likes to paint scenery and reads about health and psychology because she is interested in how people think.
On Friday Ms Evan’s colleague took off his cap to show respect for grieving family and friends attending funerals.
While New Zealand bikie gang Mongrel Mob stood guard outside Friday prayers in Jamia Masjid mosque in Hamilton, in the North Island.
Pictures of Constable Evans armed with a Bushmaster rifle have gone viral with many commending her for wearing the scarf
Police guarded the cemetery where funerals for people killed in the Christchurch mass shooting took place
A fellow male police officer took off his hat to show respect for family and friends saying bye to their loved ones
On Friday, hundreds of Muslims and non-Muslims gathered in the city’s Hagley Park opposite the Al Noor mosque where worshipers were gunned down in a horrific terror attack just over a week ago.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern wore a black and gold headscarf for the emotional engagement.
‘New Zealand mourns with you, we are one,’ she said.
The call to prayer was heard at 1.30pm local time (11.30am AEDT) and followed by two minutes of silence.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern wore a black and gold headscarf for the emotional engagement